When it comes to the world of short film, sound is one aesthetic aspect that is often overlooked. Too frequently, we are treated to beautiful visuals that are not backed up with the same amount of auditory love. Then, comes a film like Mr. Foley—a short that buzzes, tap dances, and even slide-whistles straight into your heart.
Written and directed by D.A.D.D.Y. (Irish filmmaking duo Mike Ahern and Enda Loughman), Mr. Foley is built upon a single brilliant idea—a man wakes up to a world that is completely silent, save for the team of musicians and sound effect artists who are providing the live accompaniment to his life. What results is a zippy four minute and fifty second jaunt that is an altogether comic, tragic, and whimsical foray into the world of sound production and/or madness.
In the business of movies, Foley work is a process that is, for lack of a better word, fascinating. Entire auditory realms are created with nothing but an ample collection of household objects and a constant supply of ingenuity. Ahern and Loughman have taken that sense of wonder and transferred its very essence into their compelling narrative short. And, while sound may provide Mr. Foley with its irresistible hook, the visuals are are equally as adept. The entire piece is filled with a sort of kitschy cinematic inventiveness that would feel at home in a Wes Anderson movie. Production design is truly top notch–every object is expertly realized, from our main character’s fantastic caricature of a face cast to the vintage sound-recording equipment employed by the cast of Foley artists. With a single shot, the film has the viewer instantly engaged.
Most amazing of all, Mr. Foley is a film filled with the magic of sound, but told with minimal to no dialogue. Essentially, D.A.D.D.Y has created the world’s first non-silent silent film. Whatever they have in store next, I’m all ears…